73 (passed away Nov. 4th, 2005)
Jan. 17th, 1932
Los Angeles, California
5' 4 1/2
Sheree North's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1991 - Defenseless
1988 - Maniac Cop
1977 - Telefon
1976 - The Shootist
1975 - Breakout
1973 - Charley Varrick
1973 - The Outfit
1971 - Lawman
1969 - The Trouble with Girls
1968 - Madigan
1966 - Destination Inner Space
Guest TV Roles
The Maharani of Kooshipoo
Dawn Shirley Crang Bethel (January 17, 1932 – November 4, 2005), better known as Sheree North, was an American film and television actress, dancer, and occasional singer.
She is probably best known for being Twentieth Century-Fox's girl-next-door alternative to Marilyn Monroe during the 1950s. She starred in films such as: How to Be Very, Very Popular (1955) and The Lieutenant Wore Skirts (1956), before the studio lost interest in her and released her in 1958. As her leading film career faltered, North went on to appear on Broadway, on television, and have supporting roles in both A-movies and B-movies. She died during surgery complications in November 2005.
Early life North was born as Dawn Shirley Bethel in Los Angeles, California, on January 17, 1932, the daughter of June Shoard and Richard Crang, her stepfather was Edward Bethel, thereupon she became known as Dawn Shirley Bethel. She began dancing in USO shows during World War II at age ten. At 15, she married Fred Bessire; she had a child at 16. She continued dancing in clubs under the stage name Shirley Mae Bessire.[5
- Her mother, June Bethel, was a seamstress.
- Used as a bargaining chip by Fox against an unreliable 'Marilyn Monroe' (qv), she was found to have Monroe's exact weight and measurements at the time. She later played MM's unbalanced mother in a _Marilyn: The Untold Story (1980) (TV)_ (qv).
- Appeared in such stage musicals as "Can-Can," "Irma La Douce" and "Bye Bye Birdie.".
- Began taking dance lessons at the age of six. Moreover, at age 13 she lied about her age so she could become a chorus girl.
- As a young woman she sanded floors and parked cars to pay for her ballet lessons.
- Hollywood insiders originally whispered that 20th Century Fox hired her only as a threat to the troublesome Marilyn Monroe who was often late or did not show up on the sets. She went on to span a career of over 50 years until her death.
- Was discovered in a Santa Monica night club by a famous choreographer who enticed her to New York for a role in a Broadway musical, which in turn began her stage career.
- Measurements: 35 1/2-23 1/2-35 1/2 (measured in 1955), 37-24-38 (early 1970s), (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)
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